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Hospitals ‘scrambling’ to cope with Trump administration’s abrupt change

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Coronavirus Richard Whelan, surgeon Lenox Hill Hospital New York (Northwell Health:AFP : Handout)

In a memo sent by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on July 10, hospitals in the United States were ordered to start reporting COVID-19 patient information to a new centralized database set up by President Donald Trump’s administration. And now, according to the New York Times, 34 current and former members of the Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee are warning that the requirement is burdensome for hospitals and will have “serious consequences on data integrity.”

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The Times reports that members expressed their concerns in a previously unpublished July 31 letter that reporter Sheryl Gay Stolberg has obtained. In the letter, Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee members fear that the change had hospitals “scrambling to determine how to meet daily reporting requirements.”

They explained:

As past and present HICPAC members, we are troubled by the Administration’s unexpected decision to divert COVID-19 data reporting from CDC to DHHS. NHSN is considered one of the most robust health care surveillance systems in the U.S., as it ensures national standardization while ensuring data security and integrity. CDC DHQP experts have devoted their careers to gathering and providing transparent and actionable data. The U.S. cannot lose their decades of expertise in interpreting and analyzing crucial data with the goal of developing interventions that improve the public’s health. We strongly advise that the CDC’s DHQP data experts be allowed to continue their important and trusted work in their mission to save lives and protect Americans from health threats.

The Times notes that in July, Trump’s administration “ordered hospitals to send daily reports about virus cases to a central database in Washington — controlled by (Health Secretary Alex) Azar’s department — instead of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Such reports include information about current patients, the number of available beds and ventilators, and other information vital to tracking the pandemic. The order raised alarm that the data could be politicized or withheld from the public.”


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Attorney George Conway reveals two ‘great’ questions — that Trump can’t answer

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Prominent Republican attorney and Lincoln Project member George Conway on Monday offered his analysis of how reporters should question President Donald Trump.

Conway, the husband of White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, made his comments after watching video of Trump refusing to criticize Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“Who do you think poisoned Alexei Navalny in Russia?”

“Uh,” Trump replied. “We’ll talk about that at another time.”

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2020 Election

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Jaime Harrison, the Democrat challenging Sen. Lindsey Graham, on Monday said that his upstart campaign is panicking the incumbent.

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"Well, Lawrence, we have gotten tremendous support and we really appreciate it," Harrison replied.

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2020 Election

Outrage against Dianne Feinstein as potential Judiciary chair comes out against Senate reform

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Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) received harsh criticism on Monday after coming out against Senate reform of the filibuster.

“I don't believe in doing that. I think the filibuster serves a purpose," Feinstein argued.

"It is not often used, it's often less used now than when I first came, and I think it's part of the Senate that differentiates itself," Feinstein falsely claimed.

https://twitter.com/sahilkapur/status/1308169580658012160

Feinstein is in line to chair the Senate Judiciary Committee if Democrats regain the Senate, despite never attending law school or having ever tried a case.

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